THE National Mental Health Commission today released its 2018 report card on Australia’s mental health and suicide prevention system.
Commission chair Lucy Brogden said the report acknowledged the significant reforms currently underway across the mental health and disability sectors.
“Every day we see the dedication of individuals and organisations across Australia raising awareness of mental health and wellbeing, reducing associated stigmas and developing accessible evidence based treatment and recovery services,” she said.
“We recognise that more work needs to be done, particularly to ensure access to services across the mental health system.
“We are impressed by the strong culture of continuous improvement and collaboration we see right around Australia.”
Interim chief executive Maureen Lewis said the Commission’s report highlighted the importance of prevention, early intervention and a focus on the social determinants of
health to reduce the impact of mental illness.
“Good mental health starts in infancy, so it is essential that parents, carers and early childhood educators are skilled and supported to give children the best start toward a lifetime of good mental health,” she said.
Minister for Health Greg Hunt said the Commission’s report would assist in strengthening the delivery of improved services and programs.
“The Government is committed to continuing its work to improve mental health services for all Australians,” he said.
“The Commission’s report shows us that progress is being made across this important sector.”
The National Report 2018 also refers to the strong link between physical and mental health, the elimination of seclusion and restraint in mental health facilities and the delivery of the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
The Commission will separately report on the progress of implementation of the Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan, which will be submitted to COAG on October 12.